Saturday, October 17, 2009

Happy Euro-American Heritage Month!

Oh, you didn't know that October is Euro-American Heritage Month? Well, neither did I. Until this year, that is, when I got involved with organizing the Breast Cancer Awareness event at St. Dymphna's, and discovered we were competing not only with Homecoming Week, but also with Euro-American Heritage Month.

(For some reason, just typing "Euro-American Heritage Month" makes me want to burst into "National Brotherhood Week", but I'll try to resist.)

I assumed this was something the campus student activities guy had made up. "Come on, Mr. Gunewald, you're making that up," I said.

"No, it's real," he protested. To prove it, he pulled up Google, and googled "Euro-American Heritage Month". Some hits came up. "See!" he said, pointing to one.

"Mr. Grunewald," I said, "that's Stormfront."

"No, it's real!" He found other sites that were not Stormfront. It's real. What can I say?

So what do you do to celebrate Euro-American Heritage Month? I asked Mr. Grunewald. "Should we all show up in Ukrainian folk-dance costumes?" I asked.

"Do you have one?" he asked eagerly. Note to self. Do not be cute with Mr. Grunewald. We're having a long lunch to celebrate Euro-Americanness later in the month, and he's hired a bagpiper for the event. The French club is selling baked goods. And...

Every morning on the announcements they read the Euro-American fun fact of the day. This is what finally got me in trouble with Mr. Grunewald. I was supposed to get on the microphone before lunch and remind the kids about the Breast Cancer Awareness Moment of Silence on the law--what St. Dymphna's calls the Holy Grass--at the end of lunch. As I headed out to do that, Mr. Grunewald intercepted me. "You need to read about the fish and chips too," he panted.

"The fish and chips?"

"They read the wrong Euro-American fact this morning! It was right on the bulletin! We're having fish and chips in the cafeteria for lunch! They were supposed to read about the fish and chips!"

I check the bulletin. Sure enough, there is a while paragraph about fish and chips. Did you know that fried fish came to England with Portuguese Jews? (That I knew.) Did you know that Charles Dickens mentions fried fish sellers? Did you know that fish and chips are served in England wrapped in newspaper? Now you know.

I headed for the microphone, and ran into our dean, Mr. Lucas. "Should I read about the fish and chips before or after breast cancer?" I asked him.

"Fish and chips?" Mr. Lucas bellows.

"It was supposed to be the Euro-American fun fact. They're serving fish and chips in the cafeteria."

"NO WAY! No more announcements! They already say we have too many announcements! Besides, they READ a Euro-American fun fact."

"It was the wrong one."


So we didn't read about the fish and chips. We read about the Breast Cancer Awareness event, and I skedaddled back to get my study hall reassembled.

And ran into Mr. Grunewald. "What about the fish and chips?" he wailed.

I can't wait for the bagpiper.


The back of the hill said...

Euro-American Heritage Month?

Ummm, cheese? Celebrate cheese?

Lucky us.

The back of the hill said...

Not enough space on the calendar.

January: Jewish Heritage Month;
February: Black History Month / African American History Month
March: National Women's History Month
April: Asian Pacific Islander Month / Confederate Heritage Month
May: Asian Pacific Heritage Month / Haitian Heritage Month / Halifax Asian Heritage Month / Jewish-American Heritage Month / Latino Heritage Month / Older Americans Month
June: Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Heritage Month / Carribean Heritage Month / Portugese Heritage Month
September - October: National Hispanic-Latino Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)
October: National Italian American Heritage Month / National Disability Employment Awareness Month / Polish American Heritage Month
November: National American Indian Heritage Month
December: Universal Human Rights Month

On the other hand, once you're sick and tired of all the month-long celebrations, Dutch-American Heritage Day (November 16) must come as a relief.

Clogs and illicit substances - whoopee!

Wallace said...

The 17th of March to the 15th of April, every year, is the Official European-American Heritage/History Month.

It falls between two month. Even the U.S. Army post it on the calendars.